After dating online for five months, they finally met when the Canada-US border reopens

中文 | English

We’d like to thank Nick Fang for translating this article from Chinese to English to spread the science behind love and dating. If you would like to help translating or proofreading our articles, please email

Today’s story is about Jude and Ann, a magnificent couple.

Jude, forty-two, born in Guangzhou. Ann, forty, born in Beijing. There is a world of differences between their personalities. And they weren’t what they expected as an ideal partner either. One worked in the U.S. while the other worked in Canada. Distance and time-zone almost became a roadblock in their love journey. 

The chance of their lives overlapping was practically 0. But an introduction by Bessie, a 2RedBeans matchmaker and consultant, brought them together for a video date this March. The two stayed on the phone for an entire five hours until their phone ran out of battery. After that, they would regularly make long phone calls to catch up with each other’s past. One of the longest phone calls lasted nineteen hours. 

By May, the two were deeply in love.

With the pandemic, the couple could not meet up for a long time. On August 9th, they finally met at the New York airport the day when the Canada-US border reopened.

After a period of long intensive work, Jude collected a two-week vacation. He used to spend his vacation traveling. But this time he wanted to use it to see Ann. 

September 6, Jude flew to see Ann and Popo from 2RedBean had the chance to interview this lovely couple.

▌Popo: The two of you talked for five hours on your first video call until your phones died. You guys must have been each other’s ideal type right?

Ann: Honestly, we weren’t each other’s ideal type. But we still had a great time for a first time video call. Jude just had a long flight because of work and had two big dark circles under his eyes. Yet he talked with me for five hours. It wasn’t awkward at all. Neither of us tried to ask about each other’s social economic status or tried to poke at each other’s privacy. We had an amazing discussion with tons of interesting topics. It was back and forth and we resonated with each other quite a lot. The chemistry between us is fascinating. You can fall in love with someone even though they may not be your ideal type and they are extremely different from you. 

Jude: Right. Although we are not each other’s ideal type, ever since I met Ann, I started to believe in fate. Even though we have different personalities, we tend to say the same words and view problems from similar angles. Interestingly enough, we were born in the north and south parts of China respectively and now resided in different countries. I would have thought that there would never be any intersection between us, but the coincidences are unbelievable. Both Ann and I had traveled around the world for education and work. We’ve experienced similar lifestyles at different points of time. Like the road I came across the most in New York, she lived there once. We both like the same Hong Kong restaurant……we’ve been to tons of similar places. We had so many things in common. Both of us are hardcore materialism. Now, I start to believe in fate. Those who meant to meet will meet eventually. 

But, the most unbelievable thing is Bessie. I have no idea how she found the two of us among all their users. I joke with her often: “what god are you?”

▌Popo: Haha, I’ll interview Bessie later. Tons of relationship broke because of long distance. The pandemic didn’t help either. What’s the key to a successful relationship in your opinion?

Jude: Having never met each other and having to battle against distance and time zone difference, it requires both of us to work really hard. Our communication frequency was scary. The two of us had to use all our spare time. The difficulty of a long distance relationship is fairly hard. Both parties must believe in the relationship like one believes in gravity. Then you can work out any problems with dedication. 

It was torturing to not be able to see each other in person. But there’s a good side to it too. We have to admit that appearances are important. But if you met in person first, it’s hard to focus on what’s inside. To learn if two of you match on a deeper level, that’s the key to a long term relationship. Because of the pandemic, we had to break how we used to date. And I think it turned out to be a more decent way. 

Ann: Right. We spent tons of time to communicate on a deeper level. Sometimes I would be super tired but there’s an unseen force pushing me to answer his phone calls. Everyone is busy nowadays. But if you only spent ten twenty minutes on small talks, talking about what you ate, how’s work, how’s sleep, you’d never get into their heart. Me and Jude’s success largely came from quality conversations.   

It was easy for two people to see each other before. A coffee date, a brunch, or watching a movies, etc. Lot of things that distract you from truly to know someone. Online communication is really a spiritual exchange on the contrary. It is a good thing that people are more willing to dig deep into a topic.

▌Popo: For long distance relationships, what else can you do besides keeping up with communication?

Jude: At the beginning, we talked nonstop. But as time went by, it was more about accompanying each other. We never hung up, like we stayed up together 24-7. Even though we are not kids anymore, we surprisingly have unlimited energy to love each other.

Because Ann likes music, I borrowed a guitar, and recorded a song for her. Some of the melodies were written by me and I changed some of the lyrics too. Then in times where we cannot be together, my voices are still with her. Singing is not my expertise and I haven’t touched a guitar in years. The guitar that I borrow goes out of tune sometimes, but I still recorded a lot for her. It feels like relationships during our college years.

Ann: Haha, singing like a lead guitarist is a bit of a stretch for him. But Jude’s singing is pretty good. Despite being a southerner, his Beijing rock is pretty local, sometimes he does gentle tunes too. I liked all of them.

Our participation in each other’s life is pretty high. He would put the phone on speaker when he’s working. I don’t disturb him, but I can hear what he’s doing, it makes me feel closer to him.

▌Popo: That’s really romantic. Give me a few things that are really memorable during your relationship?

Ann: Jude had a scary accident once. Once he was caught in heavy rain. His car just left the hotel and started to sink. Water was flooding into the car and quickly over his feet. We were texting, and even though he said everything was fine, I knew how serious the situation was. I contacted the hotel front desk for help immediately. I was as scared as he was at the moment, but I tried to keep calm. If his replies are a bit slower I would start to worry. I was contacting the hotel on one hand, while texting him tips about how to save himself in a situation like this. I told him how to use the headrest to smash the driver side window according to a related documentary I once watched. Fortunately, he did not have to use what I taught him, and was quickly rescued by passers-by. The whole process only took more than ten minutes, but I felt that it was really, like several hours. By the time he escaped, I found that my hands were still shaking.

Jude: Speaking of this, Ann really worried about me. When I was in the car, my mobile phone kept dinging, it was all Ann’s messages telling me what to do, and to make sure that I was still alive haha. These ten minute were very nerve racking. I even felt as if that I have experienced life and death together with Ann. Afterwards, she called and scolded me. If it weren’t for my negligence, such a scary thing would not have happened. She had never lost her temper like that before. I can imagine her helplessness. At that moment, I understood that I am really important to her.

▌Popo: What an experience. Fortunately you came out safe. Conflicts between lovers is inevitable. Have you two ever argued? What do you do when you encounter conflicts?

Ann: There will definitely be unpleasant moments. But there were almost no real arguments. If there are conflicts, we will definitely communicate and resolve them as soon as possible. Many things have no right or wrong. It’s just that we each view the problem from different perspectives, nothing more. I think we are in a growth-oriented relationship. We both have an open and learning attitude. When problems arise, the two of us communicate back and forth. Afterwards our relationships become better and we understand each other better. We are both willing to listen. Another good thing is that both Jude and I are kind of perceptive. We can tell each other’s subtle emotions, so we rarely accumulate problems.

Jude: That’s right, we are quite perceiving. In many cases, before one party expresses unhappiness, the other party is already aware of it. Then we will communicate as soon as possible. We quickly find the crux of the problem, and soothe each other’s emotions. In fact, I think the point between couples is not whether you will argue or not, but how you solve the conflicts, how you communicate, and whether you understand the deepest needs of each other. I am a very impatient person. Ann is very relatively calm. But our communication channels are very good. It’s not necessarily about strong communication skills, but because of love, we are very, very willing to communicate with each other.

▌Popo: That’s great! This is worth learning for couples. After talking for five months without meeting each other, what did you do the first time you met?

Jude: As soon as we know that the US-Canada border is to open, we set up a date at the New York Airport. And on the day we finally met, we were both in such a hurry because we really couldn’t wait anymore! Both of us were carrying large suitcases. We used to face each other with our mobile phones and all of a sudden we were a little lost when we saw each other in real life. At first we were a bit embarrassed. But on the way to the hotel to drop off our luggage. We rented a car and our conversation quickly switched from polite greetings to laughers and jokes.

Our road trip went from New York all the way to the north border. I have told her about places I have lived, and I want to take her to see them all.

Ann: This is mostly Jude’s ideas and arrangements. And I think it is very meaningful for us. It is not just a simple trip to eat, drink and play. But we went to the places where each other have studied, worked, and lived to understand each other’s life trajectory. The scenes that was in our imagination suddenly becomes three-dimensional, as if we have participated in each other’s past lives. If it weren’t the pandemic, we would actually like to go back to the city where we grew up, Beijing and Guangzhou, to take a look. Well, we will make it into a reality later on.

▌Popo: I hope that couples who cannot meet due to the pandemic will be reunited soon. Do you have any suggestions for couples experiencing long distance relationships?

Ann: I want to give some advice to people who use online dating. Smooth communication is a key reference point for judging whether you are suitable or not. Some people might chat for half an hour and still chat about the pandemic situation with little or no depth. Maybe your communication is really not on the same channel and it would be better not to waste time. To have fun and to feel empathy in an online chat does require some clear understanding of each other. 

In fact, Jude and I were somewhat courteous for the first time. But we got better after that. I actually hoped that I could expose my vulnerability in the beginning. If it doesn’t bother him, then I’m very lucky. If he can’t, that could potentially cause a lot of chaos later in life. In fact, there are not that many happy times in life, most of them are difficult moments that require mutual support for each other.

Jude: We didn’t originally believe in long distance relationships. But we are indeed a very successful example. Love is not a standardized thing. It is not necessary to meet before you can decide whether to continue or not. If you think this relationship is worth it, then do everything that you can before you meet. If you are looking for a lifelong partner, there are many things you can learn and build in the early stage.

And I agree with what Ann said, show your vulnerability and don’t hide anything. If you expose your shortcomings to them, and they are scared away, then it’s actually a good thing. That proves that you two are not compatible. The world is big. Don’t waste each other’s time. It is better to let go and move on.

▌Popo: Now it’s confession time. What do you love about each other the most?

Ann: He is a responsible person with reliable shoulders. He has experienced many things, but a part of him is still a small child in his heart. I like it that he is willing to show me the real him.

I like his sharpness and wisdom. He can always see through the essence of things at a glance. He does a lot of deep thinking about life, which I happen to be very interested in. So if feels like that we always communicate on the same frequency.

I admire his decisiveness in doing things. This is one of my weaknesses. We make a lot of compliments to each other, as well as jokes. I am nearsighted, he is farsighted, he can see some places I can’t see and I can see where he can’t see clearly.

Well, these three points should suffice for now.

Jude: Life goes through a lot things, good or bad. She must be the one who can accompany me forever. I am a person who doesn’t believe in others easily, but she is the first person I trust 100%. .

I appreciate that she is such a unique girl. She has her own niche taste in music and movies. In many things, she has her own independent thinking and does not follow the crowd.

Also, it may be that I always look serious, so few people dare to tell me some nasty truths, but she will preach to me like a mother, saying that I eat very unhealthy, and will remind me of other things. I’m willing to take her advice. It is my luck to have her by my side. 

Ann talked about 3 things. I’ll stop at 3. But in fact, I can say 100 things.

▌Popo: Hahaha, we’ll save the rest. Do you have any thing to say to each other?

Ann: Jude, thank you for all the happiness you bring to me. You allow me to feel secure. I can imagine the future. During the difficult times of the pandemic, thank you for coming to me from so far away. You have always been a person with perseverance. There is still a long way to go in life. I believe we will be together until the end. Finally, I would like to say, Jude, thank you so much for being in my life.

Jude: Likewise, thank you for being in mine. I never thought that at this stage of my life, it is still possible for me to meet someone who is as compatible as you are. The road ahead is still long. I will always be there with you, Ann.

That is the story of Ann and Jude. Are you curious about how 2RedBeans marriage consultant Bessie matched this seemingly very different pair? How did she see the deep compatibility between them?

▌Popo also interviewed Bessie:

Bessie: I have been working as a marriage consultant for many years. I interact with many people every day. Being perceptive, discerning, and observant are my training and talent. They are crucial skills required for my everyday duties. Through a one-on-one in-depth interview, I got a good idea about Jude’s personality and preferences. I found an easily negligible but very important point about him —— Jude pays great attention to politeness and boundaries when interacting with others. His heart seems to be quite closed. But the fact is, he values quality interaction a lot. I concluded that being able to achieve in-depth communication with him would be a big breakthrough.

I immediately thought of another matchmaking client, Ann, who is a very independent-minded girl. From her knowledge level, style of thinking, maturity, and openness, I felt that they would be a great match. Although the their personalities are very different, and that don’t have geographical advantage, from intuition, I can almost be sure that they are the ones that each is looking for. And… you know the rest of the story, though it really surprised me that Ann and Jude progressed so fast. 

The recommendation from a matchmaker/dating consultant is only the first step, the two needed to do a lot of work afterward. The success of Ann and Jude is due to their determination and strong desire to explore. For two busy adults, it takes a lot of communication time to truly understand each other. Just this single task, many people cannot do it. Of course, the premise is that the two parties are sufficiently attracted to each other at the first place. The degree of mutual attraction is really important when matching people together. As a marriage consultant, in order to provide high-quality matches and to create the possibility of love, we have been trying constantly to improve both the process and individually. 

The limitation of one’s social circle has always posted a difficult problem for people who are single. We may try to get to know more people in different social situations. But we are different in the workplace, while with family, while with friends, and in different environments. To make it even worse, if in a rush, it is difficult to understand a person from all perspectives. With insufficient information, we cannot judge whether one is worthy of a deeper friendship, and it is easy to misjudge. It’s a pity that among the people who have met in life, there may be many who could be great matches for us. But because we don’t have the ability to quickly discover their true self, we ended up just as acquaintances. A matchmaker/dating consultant helps to dig out the users’ most comprehensive information and their deepest desires.

Human interactions seems to be intangible. But in fact, there are a lot of scientific methods that can help you to recognize the right person and build a strong relationship.

Finally, I hope that everyone who’s single can bravely pursue their own happiness like Ann and Jude. If you encounter any problems in dating or relationships, feel free to contact 2RedBean consultants for advice.

Interested in helping us translate blogs from Chinese to English? Or helping us proofread the English version? Send us an email at .